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hello all, i really didnt know who to ask (im not a lawyer ) so i turned to my favorite non-Gw website!
anyways i am developing my own tabletop game, in short, can i refer to GW products in my rules packets?
such as "citadel models make great starting points for your force." or "games workshop models should be used and converted to make your force" or "Warhammer high elves are the best models to use for your elven force."
ofcourse i will not use GW trademarked names or intellectual properties and i will (correctly) give credit to games workshop when i talk about their products.
SECOND question: can i publish pictures of GW models in my rules packet or show them on my website? agian, i will give credit when needed.
if i really publish these rules (not just play with my friends and such) i will get professional legal advce on these matters but i just need a quick answer now. thank you for your time
Firstly, how serious are you at devloping this game? Is it just for a bit of fun with your friends or more serious? To your questions, I think if you are serious with it, you need to talk to GW about it. Because you really dont want someone on these forums to say its alright then GW turn around and sue your ass....
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I don't think this forum is the proper place to ask about the legal issues of using Games Workshop’s intellectual property in a game of your own making, and we certainly cannot be held responsible for any and all legal advise provided by our members. Personally, I would advise against putting your money (quite literally in case of a potential lawsuit) on legal aid obtained from a third party with no formal education in international copyright laws. Instead, I suggest you take a look at Games Workshop’s page of legal information, found here.
On photos of miniatures the following is mentioned:Overall, their policy seems to be that as long as you remember to credit their intellectual property properly, and that neither you nor any third-party company makes any money whatsoever off the use of their intellectual property, you can use it. However, to be on the safe side I would suggest you contact Games Workshop’s own legal department and ask them for an answer to your question at Legal@games-workshop.co.uk.Originally Posted by Games Workshop’s Policy on Intellectual Property
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thank you very much! the GW legal page still confuses me but thanks for the adress of thier legal department.
hopefully when i get the rules ironed out i can submit them as an article for this fine site, have a good day
Yes.Originally Posted by sizzolNo.Originally Posted by sizzol
hehe, thats what i figured. may i get your reasoning behind this?
update: im emailng GW and i was redirected once, hopefully i will get a swift response
Just what's legal.Originally Posted by sizzol
Several caveats; if it's simply a fan thing and likely to promote the hobby, GW won't really care. However, make sure you credit them (used without permission, etc).
Do not tell GW you're using their IP or ask permission for it. Trademarks have to be enforced or they are lost; this usually means that if GW is made aware of improper use of trademark they have to stop it.
This is, incidentally, the thing that freaks people out; most people don't realises that GW is obliged to stomp down on its trademark protection and that they avoid such by looking the other way when they can. Just don't ask them to come take a look.
I think that I will add my cents to the fray..however I have to make a couple of assumptions.. namely it is your intention to make money out of this idea?
If this is the case.. then DO NOT CONTACT GW unless
You are fully capitalised
Have a decent marketing and distribution plan
Have a strong management team
then you will need.. a) A non disclosure agreement
b) A non circumvent agreement
c) A non soliciatation agreement
to name but a few and the above have to be signed before you even open your mouth or put pen to paper understand thus far.. you also have to ensure that you are contracting to the right legal enitity too
then you will need a very expensive lawyer..remember the whole reason behind business is to make money..
What may be worth considering is "Following GW Business Model" as a first step
There are 101 things to do prior to completion of your game and the above are just a few
best of luck I do not see I can add much more without actually giving you advice..and this is not the correct forum for that
To add to what has already been said. Why on earth would you want to advertise the use of GW miniatures for a game you are designing? It just doesn't make good business sense. If you are coming out with a game you want to make sure that you are producing anything that is needed to properly play it. This should include the miniatures as well. Otherwise you are losing out on a lot of money. More money will be made from selling the miniatures than the rulebooks.
Just my thoughts.
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Many rulesets are designed without the intent of a specific miniature (i.e. historical miniature games). Rather, they will specify a scale. If you are simply developing a ruleset I would simply omit advising what miniatures people should purchase and simply stick to what counts, such as scale. Furthermore, if this ruleset is going to be distributed for free, I would not worry about legal ramifications as there is no profit on your side. If you intend to actually publish this ruleset then I would simply strike advertising, and I do mean advertising, for other companies.